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Friday, January 23, 2009
Stranded In Canton- Eggleston's Harrowing Home Movies
I'm away for a week and won't be posting so here's a long one for you, it runs 1:17 hrs. It's put together from footage shot in the early 70's around Memphis and New Orleans by the photographer William Eggleston, one of the greatest and most famous photographers alive. If you're in NYC you can catch the retrospective at the Whitney (which ends Jan 25th so hurry), where this is also showing. Otherwse, turn to full screen and sit back. It's mostly drunken, quaaluded out, late night debauchery you could find anywhere in the south around that time. It reminds me a lot of growning up in Florida. Although I've never seen anyone bite the head off of a chicken as seen here. And Eggleston doesn't know any paint huffers. You'll also spot some (in)famous faces like bluesman Furry Lewis, Jim Dickinson, Jerry McGill (I think the only Sun Recording artist to go into bank robbery as a career, he made this great record with Jim Dickinson in '66, the last good Sun 45), Johnny Woods, Stanley Booth, Dewey Phillips, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis, et al, all make cameos. It's fun and haunting and sometimes a bit unwatchable, but always riveting. It was edited together by Robert Gordon, author of It Came From Memphis (Pocket Books, 1995) and Can't Be Satisfied: The Life Of Muddy Waters (Little, Brown, 2002), both excellent. I'll be back around the end of the month and hopefully have something to say.